View Full Version : The Ultimate STOL Shortwing??

01-29-2013, 01:10 AM
Hey Folks,
As many of you know, I am in the process of selling my Pacer as my family is outgrowing it. It really has been a fantastic airplane for us, and for the MONEY, I just don't think a well built Pacer can be beat, especially if you want to go out and play on short/rough stuff. So, as it is hard to let go of my Pacer, and we already bought a replacement for it, I am doing my best to coax my Dad into another Project........

So, this is how my certified short wing ended up for reference: http://brentpahls.wix.com/triple3eightzulu

So, for the sake of discussion, and to start a place to keep ideas/thread links, lets see what we can come up with for a "budget" experimental shortwing.

It's all about weight, everything in the airplane has to prove its worth vs. weight........

The Wing:
The first thing most do when going experimental with a pacer project is plan for "cub" wings. This is great, but you can buy a pretty nice compete, flying airplane for the cost of a new set of uncovered, no tanks, Dakota/cubcrafters/Mackey/etc. cub wings.

My experience with my Pacer, is that the short wing works pretty good, especially with some angle of attack.
The short wing I have been dreaming of is a stock wing with sullivan tips/vg's/ailerons to the tip/longer Doug Keller flaps/and a slat. I would keep the stock tanks due to cost, and 36 gallons works great when carrying fuel bags and leaves options of lightening the airplane up when needed, yet still having range available all with the same load of fuel.
Keller flap info:http://www.supercub.org/forum/showthread.php?40370-Cool-New-Flaps-on-the-way-Decent-Article-with-Pictures-on-the-Planes-at-Valdez&highlight=keller+flaps

I think the Trimmer gear is great, the maule oleos clean it up aerodynamically and it works with the basic pacer architecture. Could we go to 6" extended gear without major mods to make use of the slatted wing?

If you are able to use an O-320 that came with an airframe, then cost wise it makes sense to put some 10:1's in and call it good. But if you are building an engine, it probably costs about the same to build a hot rod 320 as a hotrod 360.......360 is going to weigh more, the cub guys seem to really like a LIGHT cub with a 320 over the 360. But, the Pacer is already probably going to be a little "fat" compared to a light cub so maybe the 360 is an advantage? I am not sure here.
No electrical system option?........ with the left side pilot seating, and the wing strut location, going without an electrical system and hand propping from behind the prop may be tough??? Anybody figured this out on a Pacer?
I love the borer on my Pacer, the there seems to be some advantages in using a Catto etc. to get quick spool up and weight off the nose.....

Sticks are cool, but I would go with single controls. Stephen has done this so I imagine it could be done again?
Pilot side seaplane door to lean out when taxing in the rough.
Skylight to be able to see in the canyons
Basic fabric interior, with some composite floorboards etc to keep weight down. I really like this guys approach: http://www.supercub.org/forum/showthread.php?40889-Building-a-Javron-Cub&highlight=javron+cub

I also think that stretching the fuse could be a great way to get some elevator authority back when slow. My Pacer when it has the back seat out, no tools or survival gear etc. in it is able to bring the tail up immediately with power on takeoff. This helps with visibility and also helps to keep from beating the tail so badly on big rocks. But, it has a hard time "rounding out" in the flare for landing when loaded this way. This is not a big deal, as my airplane always has survival gear/tools back there, but then the tail does not come up for a second or two into the t.o. roll. PA18 horizontal/elevators may help this some, but I would think 18''-24" of fuse lever arm would help a lot? How will it fly with the lengthened fuse and short wings? Anybody ever seen this done?

Anyway, this is some of the discussion my dad and I have been having over the last few days. Thought I would bring it to the shortwing table and see what we can learn.


01-29-2013, 01:25 AM
I had a nice chat with your dad this evening.

I have been looking into 0360 options. It looks like the lightest option is Svenn's STC, which uses the light narrow deck engines.

Another way to save weight is cut the panel to basic minimum instrumens, AS, Alt., and compass, then add a Dyon D1.

I'm enjoying the Oregon coast rain in Newport.

01-29-2013, 02:37 AM
A few poor quality clips of playing in Alaska around Lake George with the family and light camping gear that give an idea of my current Pacers performance with some weight in it.





01-29-2013, 02:42 AM
I had a nice chat with your dad this evening.

I have been looking into 0360 options. It looks like the lightest option is Svenn's STC, which uses the light narrow deck engines.

Another way to save weight is cut the panel to basic minimum instrumens, AS, Alt., and compass, then add a Dyon D1.

I'm enjoying the Oregon coast rain in Newport.

Thanks for taking the time with my Dad, he really enjoyed the conversation, and I had forgotten all the great mods you have done to your airplane. I did not address much in the way of weight savings in my first post, but I think you have that part figured out! Ya, was going to take the kids stealhead fishing tomorrow, but they got the forecast a day off and it is still coming down hard here!

Maybe Steve can chime in on Pacer wings on a Clipper fuse? Seems like a nice light way to get sticks, small instrument panel etc. How much smaller is a clipper than a Pacer/Tripe?

Also, what year Pacers were the lightest? Did they go to split seats and the raised panel in 55' or 56'? What else added to the weight?

Steve Pierce
01-29-2013, 07:31 AM
The PA16 and early PA20 fuselages without the baggage door are the lightest. The Clipper controls are far lighter than the Pacer/Tri-Pacer yoke assembly. I liked the slotted Dakota Cub wing but I wonder how much is the slot and how much is the longer aileron extended to the tip being we are talking a budget.

01-29-2013, 07:39 AM
Wow, Brent what a heckuva nice shortwing! With regard to the split-seat question, I believe it was '56. My '55 Tripe has a bench - which I hate because my wife can't reach the rudder pedals and a booster cushion is too uncomfortable for her . Mine also has the low panel , which I kinda like.

01-29-2013, 08:17 AM
Has anyone heard of an approval for flaps on a Clipper?

My priorities for STOL

Weight reduction (both plane and pilot)
Big and flatter prop for T.O. and Wing extensions for landing
H.P. For T.O. and VG's for landing

Brent, Great video, I'm ready to head north again.

01-29-2013, 04:46 PM
What is the difference in the wing attach from a clipper to a Pacer? Can we put pacer wings on a clipper or as Stephen asked, can we put flaps on a clipper?
I agree that the slot probably comes with the rest of the wing, but am am wondering about a "slat" and how easily this can be retrofitted to a stock wing?

Johnnie, thanks for the info on the seats, and I think ideally, the lower panel is the way to go for visibility and less weight if you don't have much in your panel.

Stephen, AK was a blast, and the more I look back at videos, the more I miss it. Seems you can be in the moment and not realize how great that moment really is until you look back on it, lol.

Edit: Just did a little digging around the site and came up with some threads about experimental clippers. Steve posted this in another thread.:
"No, you would have to install a Pacer wing and all the associated controls and get an approval. Side slip and an O-320 or trade for a Pacer would be suggestion. However after you fly a Pacer you want more wing area which leads me to the Dakota Cub slotted Pacer wings."

Also found this from Chris: http://www.shortwingpipers.org/forum/showthread.php?5076-Experimental-Clipper&highlight=clipper+specs
Just sent Chris a text to see if he knows any more about this airplane as it is an old thread.

01-29-2013, 05:05 PM
Also, noted that Trimmers gear is available for the PA16 also.......so the underseat truss must be the same/similiar to a 22?

Steve Pierce
01-29-2013, 09:08 PM
Piper has the same wing attach on everything. Pacer wings will go on a Clipper and vice versa. Not really any room for flaps on a Clipper unless you shortened the aileron and then you might as well use a Pacer wing. I think the Mackey slats could be fitted to a Short wing. Not sure how effective they would be with the higher angle of incidence, you might really be looking at the sky on approach then.

01-30-2013, 09:34 AM
Sounds similar to my current exp stretched pacer project. Lengthened wings,seaplane doors,hot rod 320, possibly spring gear for weight and drag reduction,glass pannel will cost less and weigh less,push ailerons out and lengthen flaps. My use will be more float oriented than rough terrain.

01-30-2013, 04:21 PM
I had not taken a real interest in slatted/slotted wings before we flew with Randy Goza when we were up in AK. He was flying his SQ-2 and I was blown away seeing it in person. We have all seen videos etc, but in person, the things that airplane and Randy did really amazed me. If for no other reason than just straight up fun, I want to do this!

Here is our home video my wife shot from inside the Pacer while flying with Randy.....Gives a little idea of the performance of the slatted SQ-2. Randy stands it up on the tail and drops in ACROSS the strip we had just landed!


And of course the new Highlander....


01-31-2013, 12:30 AM

If you decide to go the stretched pacer/Wag 2+2 route, please feel free to pm me. I am building one currently and these planes are somewhat of an enigma and there is a minefield to navigate with the new(er) 51 percent rules. My project is ready for an engine and is 24 inches longer than a piper pacer and has 17 foot wing panels with 8 foot flaps and 8 foot ailerons. Supercub sized tail feathers. In any event, it sounds like you are looking for longer wings and possibly more power. If you use an old piper fuselage, which may not be the best idea, consider the SB's as they can be time consuming.